A few weeks ago, I published a post entitled “Sustained.” I shared how the Lord and the prayers of so many people helped get me through a rough patch in my life. I would be remiss if I did not also thank the many people who contributed to my husband’s recovery and my own survival during such a difficult time.

Again, a special thank you to all who prayed for us in our time of need. Thank you to all who read the recent post and sent a compassionate note. It was interesting that when my husband was taken to the Boise hospital that it just “happened” that one of the finest neurologists in Idaho was on duty. He stayed on my husband’s case until he was certain that the bleeding had stopped in his brain. The nurses and aides were great, every one of them. One doctor in the SICU said, “How is it that your husband always gets the best nurses on every shift?” Another answer to prayer.

The therapists, doctors, nurses and aides at the Rehab hospital also get a great big, “Thank You.” They are the ones that worked several hours a day to get him ready to come home. By the time he came home, he could walk with a walker and do most things for himself. I will always be grateful to them.

And last but not least, our son and daughter in law who took me into their home for a month. They rearranged their schedules in order to take me to the hospital and pick me up each day. They were concerned with my every need and shielded me from loving and concerned people who would have overwhelmed me emotionally. How can I ever thank them?

At this time, my husband is doing well. He is much improved and can do most things except drive. Life goes on and I will return to blogging and writing, but I couldn’t move forward until I publicly thanked each and every one of you who helped us during this difficult time.


“He shall cover you with His feathers; and under His wings you shall take refuge.” Psalm 91:4

Late in November, my husband had an ischemic stroke. He spent a day in the hospital and we were rejoicing because he had no restrictions and no deficits. It was if it had never happened. The doctor was positive and gave him medication to mitigate any possible further strokes. Great…no problem…or so we thought.

Ten days later, the nightmare began. At 3:00 A.M., he had a hemorrhagic stroke caused by the medicine. He collapsed on the floor of the bathroom and could barely speak. He could not move and I ran to dial 911. I also called my son at that time. The moments crawled by as we waited for help. I brought him a pillow and held his hand. Finally, the paramedics came and took him to the hospital. My son had arrived by then and we followed behind.

He went to the first hospital and they took a CT Scan and we were told they did not treat this kind of stroke and we would need to go to the larger hospital downtown. My son brought me home to pack and we went there. In the meantime, I asked him to call my daughter-in-law ask her to put us on the prayer chain at church. Believe me, I was barely holding it together.

My son and I entered my husband’s room as nurses were putting in the IVs. The neurologist arrived soon after and told us that because my husband had two different types of strokes, it would be dicey treating him. Both strokes required different blood pressure levels and we were in SICU so that he could get the required medicine and be watched carefully. The neurologist took an MRI and told us that we would have to wait until the next day to see if the bleeding in his brain would stop. As he examined my husband, we saw that he could barely talk and he had no feeling on his right side. He could not hold his arm up or his leg for any length of time. It did not seem like the prognosis was great.

However, day by day, we saw improvement. The first day we got the good news that the bleeding had stopped in his brain. We saw from the monitors that they were able to keep his blood pressure in the target range to treat both strokes. After three days without food, a therapist came in to give him a swallow test. He was able to begin to eat food. After six days, he could stand by his bed holding onto a walker. They then transferred him out of SICU to a regular room.

Three days later, he was discharged to a therapy hospital. During that time, he received three hours of therapy; speech, occupational and physical. By the time he left there, he could walk with a walker, and they helped him with simple skills like bathing and dressing himself. Every day, he made a little more progress. Twelve days later, he was released to go home. We stayed at our son and daughter-in-law’s for a week then we returned to our own home. He continues with therapy two times a week and has gone from using a walker to being able to walk on his own. Every week we see improvement in his condition. Much of the feeling has returned to his right side.

As difficult as this journey has been, I would not have come through this without the kindness of our son and daughter-in-law, our friends, and the countless prayers of people, many of whom we did not know. There were so many nights when I could not pray. I just stared at the ceiling and felt my own emotional pain. And yet, the Lord sustained me (and my husband) each and every day. He met need after need with His grace as I felt His love and comfort. There is no One like Him and I know I could not have survived this without His sustaining power.

The Eyes of Faith

Have you ever been praying for someone and you only see them as they are? Maybe they are making a bunch of mistakes. Perhaps they are sabotaging themselves at every turn. Their behavior has made you think of them and react towards them in a certain way. We seem to be locked into seeing them in a negative light and we treat them accordingly.

Perhaps we need to take some time and think about how the Lord would like their lives to be. What would that look like? If we can come up with a positive picture of them in our minds, then perhaps we can pray for them that way. We would be seeing them with the Eyes of Faith. Faith that when God intervenes in their lives, their lives will look much different.

The amazing thing about this is that when we can do that, we begin to treat them differently. We begin to treat them with more respect and we are not so negative towards them. We speak to them about the possibilities in their lives and try to help them see a different future for themselves.

When they can see themselves in a different light, it helps to dispel their negative self-image and sometimes they can believe in themselves again. People who are caught in a negative cycle of behavior have lost hope for themselves and their actions may just become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Is there someone you need to begin to look at with the Eyes of Faith? I know there is in my sphere. Remember the Scriptures say, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen.” Hebrews 11:1 Let’s hope for the best and see those caught in a negative spiral with the Eyes of Faith. It just may help change their world.

Image by Daniel Hannah. Courtesy of Pixabay.

Flip the Script

The other evening, I couldn’t sleep. I began to pray for a member of our family that keeps making mistakes over and over. As I prayed for him, I talked with the Lord about the things he kept doing. Eventually, about 1:00 A.M., I fell asleep. The next morning, when I woke up I was discouraged and didn’t know why. I thought about it and realized that I had been focusing on the mistakes this person kept making. I could see I needed to flip the script.

I then remembered Ruby, a friend of mine, who would say, “Don’t pray the problem!” I looked back at the evening before and that’s pretty much all I had been doing. So what should I do instead? I prayed about it. The first thing I needed to do was to get my eyes off the person and his problems and place them on the Lord.

I spent that day focusing on the greatness of God and his ability to answer my prayers. After all, He created the universe. He keeps the stars fixed in the heavens and the planets spinning in alignment. Surely, He has the ability to help solve the problems that concern me. Psalm 113: 4-6 says, “The Lord is high above all nations, His glory above the heavens. Who is like the Lord our God, Who dwells on high, Who humbles Himself to behold the things that are in the heavens and in the earth?” Clearly, our God has the power to answer our prayers.

That evening after thinking about the greatness of God, I felt the Lord nudging me to be thankful for the things He had done for me. He reminded me of the time when I could have accidentally killed my brother. He was not even injured after the incident. My entire life would have been ruined had I hurt my brother, but God in His mercy, prevented that from happening. He also reminded me of the times He protected me during the years when I was not living for Him. Psalm 118: 1-2 says: “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” Surely, I could see how God had been merciful to me and that He would be merciful to my relative.

The last thing I was reminded of is to be careful where I put my faith and focus. The Lord instructs us in His word to believe that He can and will answer our prayers. The disciples had been trying to cast out a demon and they were unable to. Jesus showed up on the scene and cast it out. The disciples wanted to know why they had failed. In Matthew 17: 20 Jesus answered, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.” Again, even though this problem seemed impossible to solve, the Lord was reminding me that nothing is impossible for Him.

So the next time you become discouraged in prayer, flip the script and remember Ruby and her advice, “Don’t pray the problem!” Place your focus on the Lord, His greatness, His mercy, be thankful and have a little faith in Him. He can do anything!

Photo Courtesy of Pixabay.

The Russian Bear

The Russian Bear has surrounded Ukraine with its arm. It is quickly drawing it into its orbit in order to annex it. How long will the Ukrainians be able to hold him off?

When Hitler began to annex countries into the Third Reich, those that were not well armed did not last long.

Czechoslovakia lasted 24 hours.

Poland held him off for 35 days.

France lasted six weeks.

Norway held the Nazis off for two months.

Please pray for our brothers and sisters in Ukraine. They are brave but not well armed and every day they are able to stand against the might of the Russian army is a miracle. May God help them.

Image by Hakan Carlander. Courtesy of Pixabay.

Father Knows Best

When I was growing up, there was a weekly television series called “Father Knows Best.” Every week, the mother and kids would deal with a problem. They would wrestle with a solution and then the father would come home from work. He would listen to the problem and then, in his wisdom, would give them a solution. Whether they liked it or understood the answer, the family would follow the father’s advice and things would work out. Lately, the title of this sitcom has been in my mind.

I’ve been thinking about all the prayers I prayed as a teenager. They consisted of a lot of desires; the boys I thought I wanted to marry, where I thought I wanted to go to school, where I wanted to live, etc.; typical teenage girl hopes and dreams. Looking back, I am so thankful that my Heavenly Father did not answer those prayers with a “yes.” I certainly didn’t know what I was really asking for but He did. You see, my Heavenly Father really did know best all those years ago.

As I think through the decades of unanswered prayers, I wonder why there were so many “no” answers. I thought that what I was praying for was a good thing for my life or for the lives of others but so many of my requests were not answered the way I wanted them to. People divorced, died and lost their homes. Businesses were lost and loved ones went through a lot of suffering. I can’t even comprehend why my prayers were not answered and yet by faith I must trust that my Heavenly Father knew best.

My desire would always be to be spared suffering, for myself and those I pray for. In my quest of faith, I must admit that I don’t understand my Father’s allowance of suffering in this world. Why doesn’t he just wave a magic wand and make everything better? I have no answers for any of these questions. I do know a few things though.

I know I serve a good and loving God. I know that I live in a fallen world where there is suffering as a result of man’s sin. I know that this earth and this life are temporary and that there is an eternal life to come. I freely admit my lack of understanding but I do trust Him because after all, I believe that my Heavenly Father knows best.

Image courtesy of Pixabay.



“If He carried the weight of the world on his shoulders; brothers and sisters, I know He will carry you.”                                        Scott Wesley Brown

A few weeks ago, I started looking at shoulders. Shoulders, you say? Yes, shoulders. I started looking at the shoulders of our government leaders and I thought about the weight they were carrying on them. They are tasked with promoting the general welfare of the citizens under their authority. This must have been a staggering time for them while dealing with the Covid19 Crisis.

I especially think of one governor I saw on television last week. His state has lost the most people to this disease and he looked shell-shocked. I thought of the sleepless nights he must have spent worrying about those under his care. This disease has left a lot of people at the top feeling helpless in many ways. After all, how do you fight a disease that you don’t yet have a viable treatment for? I also thought about some of the mayors in this country; some of their cities have a greater population than a lot of our states.

There’s not much we can do to help them other than to pray for them. Scripture encourages us to pray for “all in authority that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.” All, you might ask if you are a political partisan? Yes all, regardless of political affiliation. But you don’t know who is in charge of our state, you might say to me. That’s right, I don’t. However, the Bible is clear on this issue, “All” apparently means all.  

Before you rush to take another pill for your hypertension, think about it this way. Everyone (all)  in authority needs wisdom, strength and divine guidance. At the time this was written, Romans were under the authority of their Emperors. Some of the Emperors were notoriously cruel, unjust, believed they were divine, and held the power of life and death over their citizens. There was a lot to disagree with the way they governed but believers were instructed to pray for them nonetheless. 

The next time we see one of our government leaders on television, let’s take a closer look at their shoulders and see if we can discern the weight they are carrying on them. May it stir compassion inside of us so that we are motivated to pray for them. Maybe, just maybe, our prayers will help lighten their load a bit. 

Scripture Reference: 1 Timothy 2: 2. Image courtesy of Pixels.

The Mystery of Prayer

Those of us who have prayed over the years know that prayer is a mystery. Having read many books on the subject, done many Bible studies and spent literally hours praying, I should have a pretty good understanding of the subject. But the truth is, I don’t. I’ll share what I have learned and what I think I know about prayer.


Photo by Pixabay on

What I have found is that prayer seems to be answered in three ways: Yes, No, or Wait. Let’s take the first, when prayer is answered with a “Yes.” I have seen God work in miraculous ways. I have seen Him heal the sick, raise those who were practically dead from their sickbed, provide jobs, spouses, cars, you name it. It is always a glorious thing when God answers in the affirmative and it feels great to have participated in prayer when I see those kind of answers. 

Next, there are those times when God doesn’t answer in the affirmative. The person does not get healed, those who are terminally ill die, a person doesn’t get the job, car or whatever was prayed for. In other words, there is a resounding “No” to the prayer. That doesn’t feel good and I often wonder why. I know God is on his throne and He doesn’t owe me any explanation but still I wonder. Some people may tell me I didn’t have enough faith, but I know that isn’t true. I had the same amount of faith when I prayed for other things that were answered in the affirmative. Others may tell me that there must be some sin in my life, or else God would have answered my prayer. I know that is not true either. Yes, God will not hear my prayers “if I regard iniquity in my heart,” but in general there is always some element of sin in my life. Every thought I think is not one hundred percent pure and loving and every word I say is not either. That’s the way it is, and no matter how hard I try that is the way it will always be until I go to be with the Lord. The truth is, in prayer, I can ask God for things, but I am in no position to “tell” God what to do. He is still in charge of the universe and sees the big picture. I am not in charge and I do not see the big picture and I must submit myself to this truth. I know I can trust Him and that He is still on His throne when the answer is “No.”

Third, there are those times when God seems to be silent and no answer is forthcoming. A lot of times, I have the sense that I have been put on hold and the answer will come about when the time is right. But when will the time be right? When will I get the job, the promotion or whatever I have been asking for? Of course the answer is up to God, but usually the answer has something to do with me and my character. Many times, God is waiting on me for my character to develop so that He can put me in a position of greater authority and responsibility. If He allows me into that position too soon, I may fail because of a lack of character development. These are the hardest prayers to wait for, but they are the most necessary. I need to wait patiently during those times and participate with God when He is working on my character. Over the years, I have learned that I do not want to be put in a position of responsibility that is greater than my ability to handle it. When the answer turns to a “Yes,” I am thankful that He made me wait until the time was right.

Prayer is a mystery and there is no way that I understand all there is to know about it. I will continue to trust God and to pray for things knowing that I will get an answer, even if it is not the answer I am hoping for.

What about you? What have you found out about prayer? How has your understanding of the subject changed over the years? Let me know so that we can collectively learn together. 

A Prayer For Peace

pexels-photo-346885.jpegHeavenly Father,

My heart cries out in desperation for our world.

Too many people desire to hurt each other for no other reason than the desire to.

Bring us to a place where we can love each other with a pure heart.

Help us to love each person because they are a human being and created in the image of God.

Let not our race, color, religion, or ethnicity be a dividing factor but may we see each person as a uniquely created individual worthy of our love.

Help us to stand against senseless violence and not support anyone who would divide others for their own gain.

Make us true instruments of your peace.

In Jesus holy name we ask. Amen


Written after the attack on Paris, December 7, 2015

Reprint permission of World Prayers.

Can A Prayer Make A Difference?

girl-praying-hands-eyelashes-41942.jpegHave you ever watched the news and had your heart touched by a humanitarian story? How do you feel when you see someone being pulled over by a policeman? I know we see problems every day that we are not directly a part of but feel a level of concern about them. Is there anything we can do that might possibly help the person in need?

What about prayer? Can a prayer make a difference in someone else’s life? Many times we discount the value of a single prayer, especially one that is thrown up on the run. I had a friend, Bernice, who used to call these prayers “arrow prayers.” She said we can shoot them up in a matter of seconds.

I serve an Omnipotent and loving God. He has a deep concern for humanity and longs to be involved in every person’s life. He wants to bring good things to people and help them in their time of need. He also likes us to ask Him to become involved. He has given us free will and with that gift comes the choice to ask Him to help ourselves and others.

I believe that every prayer we pray matters. It may be a quick short prayer for someone we pass by on the street but it is important. It is an invitation to get God involved and help that person. Every person is priceless to Him and He wants to show each one of us how much He cares.

I have listened to countless stories about people who have been in desperate situations and were prayed for by strangers. They recount how they felt the prayers of others and were upheld in their time of need. These stories come from people of all faiths including atheists who have been helped in difficult situations.

So as we go about our day, let’s shoot up arrow prayers for others. They just might make a big difference in someone else’s life!

What about you? Have you every been prayed for by strangers and know that it made a difference?